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Gratitude

26 Nov

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Possibly one of my top ten favorite words and something I try to keep in mind when confronted with things I’d prefer not to think about because things could always be worse:

G R A T I T U D E

Perspective is so important and today, like every day, I am so grateful for

  1. My children
  2. My husband
  3. My parents
  4. My brother
  5. My extended family
  6. My friends
  7. Good health
  8. James Taylor
  9. Licorice
  10. Music
  11. Warm chocolate chip cookies
  12. When Harry Met Sally
  13. Medicine and science
  14. Taxi
  15. The NYT crossword puzzle
  16. Laughter
  17. Words
  18. Not turkey — I could skip that
  19. Meatballs
  20. My pizza oven
  21. My grandparents. They were the best.
  22. A well told story
  23. Games of all kinds
  24. Good coffee
  25. The University of Michigan
  26. Shehecheyanu
  27. The gym (not while I’m there, only when I’m leaving)
  28. Frizz Ease
  29. Blow outs
  30. Public School
  31. Kindness
  32. Sunshine
  33. Pickles
  34. Bloody Marys
  35. The ocean
  36. My Kindle
  37. WordPress
  38. My GPS even though she sometimes sucks
  39. The freedoms granted to me in the Bill of Rights
  40. Love

Thank you so very much for reading and for your encouragement. I am grateful for you all.

Shehecheyanu.

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Keep Calm and Write On!

28 Sep

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I went back to college.

Not really.  I wish. But I visited Ann Arbor, where I spent four years studying the likes of Chaucer, Pope, Shakespeare. Immersing myself in literature so beautiful I cried. Reading book after book I never wanted to end. What a privilege those four years were. Rather than constructing dry essays on economics, statistics, or arcane psychology theories, I dissected Arthurian literature, found endless examples of Christ symbolism, and even flirted with the idea of becoming an English professor.

Instead, I went to law school. And then I litigated for years where I constructed dry memoranda of law and motions involving arcane issues of product liability law, lead paint poisoning litigation, medical malpractice defense and other exciting topics.

I still continued to study and write screenplays, sketches, articles, and, of course, countless tweets and status updates.

Missing the good stuff, however, the writing that weaves a story out of a tiny detail or sentence, the kind of prose that makes a reader feel something, the type of material that prompts your heart to literally beat, I started this here blog. And I love it.

I need to feel more of this. For my husband, my kids, and most of all, me. It makes me feel whole and multi-dimensional and, perhaps, younger.

I can’t return to college. Indeed, Michigan does seem like a dream to me now. So I am engineering a way for college to return to me.

As of now, I am privately tutoring those needing help with writing. Particularly, college entrance essays (!) Please contact me directly for further inquiries and/or appointments.

I will still be writing independent of this little gig, but I am really looking forward to this as a diversion that I have already started to enjoy.

I am genuinely excited to help others tell their stories. After all, each of us has one. We should revel in it.

Ann Arbor’s Smartest

20 Apr

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I was always attracted to intelligent, semitic-looking guys. They didn’t have to be particularly handsome; just super smart. (And if any old boyfriends happen to be reading this–you’re gorgeous; I am definitely not talking about you.) Nothing turned me on more than a cerebral, dark-featured guy with a pair of eyeglasses. Thankfully, the University of Michigan admitted tons of them.

One day, in a class that focused solely on Chaucer, a boy who I never noticed, raised his hand and interpreted an Old English phrase with alarming ease. He was no looker but my goodness, he was bright. At some point, I won his attention and we went on a date.

After dinner, he walked me back to my sorority house. It was a chilly, clear night, even for hormonal 19 year olds.

“Lisa, I truly believe that I am the smartest person in the whole school.”

He leaned in for a kiss. I was intrigued. Not by him. But by his admission.

“Wait. Undergrad or the whole school?

“The whole school.”

He leaned in again. I backed away. I was not personally offended that he thought himself brighter than me. Frankly, I was happy merely to gain entrance to the University of Michigan, my #2 choice (#1 choice Northwestern can suck it). Rather, I was floored by his swagger.

“There’s 30,000 people here. You think you’re smarter than all 30,000 people? The Med School students? The Law School is in the top 5 in the country.”

“Yes, I have no doubt that I am the smartest person here. I am taking Russian just to read Dostoevsky in its natural print. Are you free tomorrow night?”

I wasn’t free. I was turned off. The fact that I later learned he had to routinely have a fraternity brother shave his neck didn’t help either.

We didn’t go out again although he did stalk me for three years, even once professing that he was in love with me. He couldn’t have been that smart because I told him many times that I was not interested. Senior year he refused to talk to me altogether and that was okay too.

After all, it was only one date and there were approximately 15,000 other less intelligent women to court.

After college I learned he only graduated cum laude. And hey, so did I.